Farmers across the country are experiencing challenging times as plummeting returns knock the rural industries and their support sectors.
A Tamahere couple know well the toll hard times can take on individuals both mentally and physically and are speaking out about their experiences.
Ken and Sue Ballantyne, who moved to Tamahere in 2013 after a lifetime farming in the King Country, recently talked candidly to The Nutters Club host Mike King about depression, managing bi-polar disorder and life on the farm.
A winner of four categories for excellence in the 2010 Horizons Ballance Farm Environment Awards, Ken never dreamt depression could be the cause of his physical problems until he found himself admitted to the mental health ward at Rotorua Hospital.
Hosted by Kiwi personality Mike King, The Nutters Club is a multimedia radio, TV and online mental health awareness, help and support service which began in 2009. Mike has been incredibly open about his history of mental health issues including addiction. His willingness to start a frank and honest dialogue about the subject late one night when guest hosting a talkback radio show, spawned an inspirational project that still continues today.
Fore more on Ken and Sue Ballantyne read this special edition of Waitomo News’ North King Country Farmer (PDF): Waitomo News North King Country Farmer
Ken and Sue can be contacted in the strictest confidence by phoning 07 843 3168 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you or someone you know needs support contact the Rural Support Trust.